Jul 15, 2009

Day 5 - Staycation 2009

The last day of paternity leave fell on Monday, July 6th and we decided to end our staycation with a bang! After swim class (doing better each day!) we loaded the kids in the car for the 1 1/2 hour drive to DISNEYLAND. We were off to the happiest place on Earth and spending the rest of the day with our friend Tamar and her son Aidin. We did not tell the kids where we were going until we pulled into the parking lot and made them guess. We took Hadarya 7 months ago (right before her brother was born!) and she did not really remember.

What an amazing day! She has not stopped talking about Disneyland and "we go to Disneyland tomorrow?" is a regular question in our house. We had a picnic lunch before we entered the park and then began our adventure. We splurged on a Princess balloon...$7.00, which continues to make our Princess smile. The first ride was the Rockets in Fantasy land where she LOVED flying high with her Aba. We went to It's A Small World and watched with delight as she took in all the music and dancing and characters. She asked for it again and so we did not get off the boat! We rode the Carousel too and watched the dance parade celebration. Again, the music hooked her and she loved seeing the characters moving about.

The biggest hit was the 45 minute wait to see the Princesses. While she is not giggly and smiley when meeting them, she did go right up to them with her autograph book and hug them and talk to them! She just loved seeing them in person and noticing their dresses. She is now really into dress up, the hats, scarves, and other around the house items are not quite cutting it anymore! So the other question of the week was "Did you get my Cinderella dress yet? We go to the store and get it?"

Yonatan took it all in from his stroller. He loved the music too and the lights. He was very happy all day, napped like a pro and ate well. He loved riding on the horse on the carousel and the boat ride was fun too despite the nap he was taking in the carrier~ The discovery of batteries for my pump made the day extremely easy and pleasant since I am no longer tied to finding an outlet.
Hanging out in the Happiest Place on Earth was delightful for the second time with our children. We cannot wait to go back again! If Hadarya has her way, it will be tomorrow.

Jul 5, 2009

Day 4 - Staycation 2009

There are no photos of our day today but lots of fun times and memories! We hopped into bathing suits as soon as our sleeping beauty woke up at 8 AM. We love that she is a sleeper and life would be grand if her brother had gotten the message. He is partial to the 5 AM hour though. We are hoping an earlier bedtime will get him to sleep longer...weird I know, but I've heard it works.

So we packed up our pool stuff and headed the YMCA in Santee for fun in the sun. We had a great time even though Hadarya shivered and chattered for the first hour! She was so cold but wanted to stay and play. Her very good friend from school, Tay, came to play with her and they had fun chasing each other and being in the water. Hadarya practiced her scoops and kicks. We did twirls and motorboats. She hopped like a kangaroo and walked like an alligator.

Yonatan loved the water and splashed around on my lap and sitting between my legs in the beach entrance area for about a 1/2 hour. Then he'd had it. I stripped him of his wet things and warmed him up and dried him off. He was asleep in the stroller in about 30 seconds and didn't move for the next 1 1/2 hours.

After the session ended and we'd showered and shampooed, we headed home, sure we'd have a napper on our hands. BUT no such luck for our 4th day of staycation. She wanted to play when we got home and spent much of the time doing so by herself yet having tired, cranky spats if something didn't go her way right away.

We ended up making a Costco run for toilet paper and ended up getting some yummy berries to eat all week. Sometimes we just need to get her out of the house and she is ok! We went to my parents for a yummy BBQ steak dinner and everyone was happy and smiley. The baby sat at the table and gobbled up green beans and rice and pears and mangoes. Hadarya devoured her dinner too and left the plate almost empty.

Grandma had a surprise for the big girl and she readily put on her jammies and sat in front of the tele to see. Grandma had tivo'd the 4th of July special at the White House that featured the Sesame Street gang singing with live music. She was in HEAVEN! She watched it twice and the baby got in his jams at 6:40 PM, drained a bottle and fell fast asleep. We put the kids in the car and drove home where both were fast asleep and in bed by 7:25 PM. I wouldn't mind that early time every night!

Tomorrow is our last staycation day. We start with swim lessons and end up at the Happiest Place on Earth. It's going to be great!

Jul 4, 2009

Day 3 - Staycation 2009

Tired but what a fun day we had! It's certainly a good thing that any type of break in routine is just a break! I am going to be exhausted after day 5!!

Today we started out our Independence Day Celebration with a trolley ride to Seaport Village. Hadarya's BF at school, Gabriella, rides the trolley to SDSU every day with her daddy. Hadarya has been talking non-stop about trolleys and gets very very excited when we see them. She has begun asking to ride one "one day." So, today was the one day.

We drove to a safe part of the outskirts of downtown to catch the trolley and took it about 5 stops to our destination. Just enough to be exciting but not get bored! She was very concerned because "the birdie needs to move out of the way, Ima" before the trolley got onto that part of the pavement. They did indeed fly away at the last second and she thought that was hysterical to see them flapping about out of the way.

At Seaport Village we were on a mission to find a balloon person and get her a balloon. We found someone (not the usual good one...but one nonetheless) who made a good enough Zoe (pink not orange) with a tutu to satsify our daughter. She had talked non-stop about a balloon since seeing someone with one the day before. We rode the carousel... all of us. Yonatan did his part and spit up at the end. We picnicked on the grass amongst the hundreds already camped out for the fireworks and then took a return trip on the trolley to our car. Yonatan sacked out in the carrier on the way to the car and Hadarya sacked out as we drove home.

After a 2 hour nap for her, lunch for him, and getting bags ready for us, we were off to Elijah's hosue to swim and eat and hang out. Despite the freezing cold water, we played and splashed and enjoyed ourselves. Yonatan loved hanging out on the grass chillin under the rainforest mat of his friend. After some fresh berries, chips, and brownies, we were off to Hank's house for the remainder of the afternoon/evening.

Hank's house has a very warm pool and we all got in; along with the other 7 kids there! It was crowded but fun for everyone. His playroom is always a big hit and Yonatan LOVED a new toy of David's that his does not have. He sat for over 30 minutes playing in the room by himself while I dried off and packed up some stuff! The kids had a blast and we ate too much food and laughed a lot and realized it was a fabulous way to end our day. The company was what made it so much fun and all the way home Hadarya asked when was Hank going to get to come to her house and play. She actually said, "I have a question" and then asked about him coming over. It was very cute!

The highlight of our entire day was Hadarya reading us her favorite book Little Quack before it got too dark in the car. She was so cute reading all the words and using tones and getting through the whole thing so nicely. We were very proud and wished we'd had a video camera!

Jul 3, 2009

Day 2 - Staycation 2009

After a lovely breakfast of homemade chocolate chip pancakes eaten picnic style in the family room, we loaded up in the car and headed to the beach. The car had been packed the night before and so the load up was much easier! We detoured at Walgreens for new sand toys and lucked out with a 4.99 bucket set with 8 pieces inside. That made all the difference in our day, seriously.

We got a great parking space at La Jolla Shores and unloaded 2 bags, 1 cooler, 3 chairs, 2 umbrellas, 2 kids, and started walking towards a spot. There were already many people at the beach despite the coldness and overcast sky. Yet, we found a prime area not to far from the car nor the water. While it was quite cold for most of our stay, Yonatan fell fast asleep at his nap time and cozied up on a lounge chair. BUT not until he'd played on the blanket with some toys and managed to get sand in his hair, diaper, and every possible orifice his body owns in under 15 minutes!

Hadarya had a blast making sand castles with our new toys and going to the ocean to get wet and bring back water for her moat. We had a little girl just under 2 named Charlotte who wandered over and sat down to play. Her dad is a teacher at a high school not far from our house and he got his stuff and joined us. Then Tanner from Arizona wandered over and played with the truck and shovel (he's 14 months old) and we totally had the party pad going on with our kids and the twins and these new friends. It was so much fun!

We ate and snuggled and dried off and got sandy and warmed up as the sun tried to break through the clouds. As soon as she said she had to go potty, we were ready to pack it up. Off we went to the lovely beach potties and she peed while I held her up! Changed quickly into undies and her new pink beach dress and then we were off to the car for her to fall asleep on the way home. Do note the cute hairdo she wore. It's one of my best and favorites so far!

After a nice nap and showers for all... well the baby got a bath in his new bath seat which he LOVED, we had a lovely visit with Grandma and Auntie Kimber. Then packed up again and headed to Balboa Park for a shabbat dinner picnic with Savta.

Savta loves to cook and she outdid herself tonight! It was quite a spread but Yonatan had the best time sucking on the cucumber sticks and nectarine pieces. We clearly are into food and are not holding him back too much. The jars of food I bought are just props that I'll use here and there...this boy is serious about getting to the good stuff!

It was a fabulous day that ended with fro yo in Hillcrest, a bottle for Yonatan, and a potty run to Starbucks for Hadarya. All asleep by 8:45 PM and our 2nd day is a hit!

Just in...

We interrupt the staycation updates for this important photo sharing opportunity! On an impulse we took the kids over to our neighbors who are photographers and asked them to take some shots (they love the practice and our kids). I had just bought them matching Elmo paraphernalia and their hair was fabulous (well Yonatan's always is!)
Here are our favorite 3 out of the 47 amazing photos. ENJOY.

Jul 2, 2009

Day 1 - Staycation 2009

We canceled a short trip to Palm Springs in favor of creating a staycation for the next five days. We kinda thought 105 degree weather with an infant and toddler was not going to be the vacation we wanted. We're making our own fun at home.

Today Hadarya had her 4th day of swim lessons and the best so far! She stayed in the water the whole time, did all the activities, and did not cry. It was so much better than yesterday. There was also a sub teacher who was female and I think that made a bit of a difference. I am so proud of her for trying and keeping up with kids almost a year and a year and half older than her! She then went to "school" and was happy with her friends (all boys today in her group; who could complain?).

Yiftach was off today on his 2nd to last day of paternity leave and the baby was playing with my parents while Hadarya swam. We convinced them to keep him all day and we had a DATE. Yep... a date with no kids, in the middle of the day on a Thursday. We went to a movie, held hands, and at popcorn. Lovely to not have little hands pawing at our faces and bodies! UP was so wonderfully done and such a feel good movie with great themes for these tough times. We lunched at Rubio's (mmm... fish tacos) and then headed home to pack up the beach stuff for tomorrow.

The baby got picked up first and then the big girl and we were off to a park to meet a friend who was in town visiting for the weekend. It was so fun to see Jean again and catch up! We then rushed off to dinner with the grandparents and everyone had fun eating together and behaving and playing. It was a delightful dinner and fabulous ending to our first day of staycation.

Total staycation cost for the day: lunch $12.53, popcorn $7.00, candy $3.10. Staying home is cheaper than going out when you use your movie passes and grandparent daycare, and restaurant gift cards! I like this so far!