Friday, July 31, 2009

When Grandma Comes to Play...

...There are no rules!

As I left to have a "molcajete" on a lunchdate, mom came over to watch the Wild Ones. I took longer than expected and came home to find the evidence of "what happens when I'm out" on my camera...

This ONE played his Nintendo DS waaaaay too long!

This ONE played his guitar waaaay too loud. It bugs the heck out of his brother!

.... And this ONE was eating mushy bananas without a bib!
They weren't mushy until he got a hold of them.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Gilroy Gardens with the (Gertie) Grandparents

Happy Anniversary to us... a bit postponed, but well worth it! My parents so graciously took my husband of 12 years and our family to Gilroy Gardens for the day. What a great day we had!

Always finding it hard to leave the house on time with all the essentials, we hit the road without diapers for Devin. A pitstop to the store and a caffeinated beverage later, we filled up the gas tank and drove, on this lovely Furlough Friday, to Gilroy.

Gilroy Gardens, formerly known as Bonfante Gardens, is perfect for all ages. The majority of the rides are suitable for the "under 48-inch" kids, something they usually don't get to experience on their own. Donovan didn't say "no" to any ride he went on. He had a blast. Dominic was almost too big for some of the smaller rides, but had fun with his brother (for a change!) and did a lot of running... through the rock maze and under waterfalls. Devin got to enjoy some of the rides too, while on my lap. He could have gone by himself on a couple of them, but I was a bit too nervous to let him. Next time!

Missing my other lens (while my brother vacations with it) I was stuck trying to take pictures that could not be zoomed. Hence, some extreme close-ups that I didn't intend to have. However, mom had her camera and got some great shots. We both had fun shooting away!

Thanks Mom and Dad for a GREAT day!

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow:

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Date with Donovan

Tonight was the much anticipated (by me!) date with Donovan to see The Wiggles. Donovan was in utero when we took Dominic in 2005. We also went to their 2004 show. Power Rangers, Pokemon and Bakugans have since fulfilled Dominic's interest and Donovan is now officially the hand-me-down Wiggles fan. The VHS tapes still work after their repeated use! I kept our special date a secret so I wouldn't have to endure the panic-stricken cries of my theater-phobic son. Boy, I really wanted to tell him! It wasn't until we met up with Dad to switch cars and go out for a quick bite to eat that I finally told him. The gears were turnin' in his head!

He was a little excited. As we drove into the parking lot he talked about seeing The Wiggles. As we approached the uniform-stricken security bag checkers, his excitement drowned. Before we headed our way to our seats (down many stairs!) we went passed the merchandise for sale. My kid didn't want anything? So, off to the concession stand for the highly anticipated popcorn (SMALL) and medium drink. Ka'ching.....$9.75. Good gravy!!!!

Down to the seats we go. One look at the arena and the kid FREAKED on me. The popcorn went under my arm (somehow) while I dragged my child to our seats, explaining to the ushers as we pass by why my kid was NOT HAPPY to be making this trip. We get settled. Donovan sits on my lap to calm down and then decides he needs to use the bathroom. Would I have to live through this turmoil again??? Up the stairs, task completed and back to our seats. People start filling in around us... things aren't looking so scary. Yet, he's still on my lap! The guitars sit in a stand on the stage while Donovan wonders why. I don't think his eyes ever wandered from them.

Finally the show begins. The lights dim, the sound loudens, and I feel warmth run down my thighs.... Did he just pee on me??? Adjusting my position and feeling nothing wet, my nose sensed what was just a toxic release of Donovan's dinner - KFC. Lovely.

Wow, did we have great seats or what? I guess I didn't need my lens on my camera after all, since my brother borrowed it for his vacation. But I did need to scoot back some just to fit people in the picture! Without zooming abilities, I say I did pretty well, considering I had Donovan on my lap the entire time.

I love the expression on Sam's (yellow) face!

Okay, all you Anthony-crushers... Did I get a good shot, or what?

Donovan's favorite Wiggle... OR, his favorite guitar!

We miss Greg, but Sam has done an excellent job as the Yellow Wiggle.

Anthony, as Old Man Tucker.

Impressive maneuver!

... and this is too! (using the cheapest stage prop ever!)

Sam, doing the Hot Potato!

Jeff, who had a birthday today, near the end of the show.

And..... he's out!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Great Aunt Dorothy

May you rest in peace, Great Aunt Dot!

Aunt Dorothy is my paternal grandfather's sister. At 90 years old, this woman could whip up a mean 5-course Italian dinner and still have enough energy for a stroll on the town. She never sat down! Always concerned with who she would meet while out, she never left the house without lipstick on. And, as this picture points out, she always had a camera (with a little birdie in it) in her hands. I often wondered what she did with all those pictures she took. As a child, I always remember Aunt Dorothy as the lady with the dollar bills in her pocket (I think they were used in bribes for a picture) and she always had a squeeze of our cheeks or a great big hug. Oftentimes a lip print on your cheek was a sign that Aunt Dot got to you! The matriarch of a large family (she was a Great-Great Grandmother to a few!) she will be missed a bunch. She had a whole lot of love to give and she never stopped giving. She was a fighter!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Lounge Lizard

Proud of his new found skills, this lounge lizard has mastered
climbing up into his brother's recliner AND stealing his weedwhacker!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Me, B and the 3 at the W.A.C.

The day before WAC...
After seeing that our favorite splashground was closed for maintenance, I drove a couple blocks to another water feature. The fun was still had.....

Bianca and the boys sitting on spouts... for now.

These two are always camera-ready.

Always wanting control, Dominic mans the on/off.

Bianca came to spend the night with the boys with much anticipation for a trip to our across-town Wackford Aquatic Center. Such a blast, literally! After nearly 6 years of living here, I believe this is only our second or third time there.

Just getting used to the water, Bianca guides Devin.

"Don't pull the rope!"

Thanks Bianca for being such a huge help and having fun with us!

While Bianca was over, we made pizzas for dinner. I bought the pre-made stuff - there's no made-from-scratch stuff happening here. The little chefs were busy making their personal pizzas, each with their own style. Dominic went with the layered sauce approach; Donovan went with the dump-the-bowl-of-cheese look (while my back was turned); and Bianca put a little smile into hers. I'll just say... Donovan's leftovers didn't heat well in the microwave. Too. Much. Cheese.

Dominic's one-salami pizza and Bianca's "happy" salami pizza.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Creating our own "splashground"...

Puppy Love

Here they come...

Thanks, but no thanks...

Care to guess how many of these I'll be receiving?

Sunday, July 5, 2009

A San Francisco Treat!

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow:

On Thursday, Rudy took the day off so that we could use up the passes to the California Academy of Sciences that had to be used by mid-month. He and Dominic attempted the trip during Spring Break and found it absurdly crowded. We planned ahead this time, leaving Devin with the Grandparents, and setting out before the sun rose!

We made the drive in good time, thanks to the carpool lane! Arriving more than an hour before the doors opened, we strolled around the area to take up some of our time. And still... we were first in line with our tickets already in hand. The line at the box office however was just beginning to grow longer. Rudy and Dominic got their tickets to see the show in the Planetarium. Dominic loved it! Donovan and I searched for a bite to eat. After the show, we all headed downstairs to the Steinhart Aquarium. Donovan was ecstatic. He loved the huge tanks of fish. It is a bit mesmerizing. I could stare at a big fish bowl for hours! Covering the entire museum, including the Rainforest and Living Roof, we finally got out of there 5-6 hours later.

Our next planned stop was at Chinatown. What an experience! Donovan got a postal truck,while Dominic is in high-heaven with his ever-popular Bakugan. We did a lot of strolling the streets here, ate at an Italian Restaurant and got stuck in traffic before finally heading home. It was a good day.