Friday, 31 July 2009

It's a Hard Knock Life

My life is Really Really Hard. Just to give you an example, I present to you: This Week.

Monday: Was forced (FORCED, I tell you) to spend the day at the beach (Jetty Island). Had to dig in sand, was required to splash in waves.

Tuesday: Had to go to the pool and play with Fleur, Penguin, and Lynn. Then went to Fleur and Penguin's [air conditioned] house for a playdate. Children played. Lynn and I chatted. Life was challenging, to say the least.

Wednesday: Saw Harry Potter on an IMax screen, and explored the Pacific Science Center.

Thursday: Though I was nothing short of horrified by the arrangement, I HAD to take the kids to a water park. Did I enjoy the water slides and wave pool? Um, no, of course not. Not a bit.

Friday: We sat on a balcony and watched the Blue Angels perform acrobatics. They were so very close, and did some really impressive stunts.

It's rough, I tell you. Rough.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Wild Waves Theme Park

Today, I took the young 'uns to Wild Waves Theme Park, a water park about 45 minutes away. They were unimaginably excited. When I got to their house at 8:30, they both had their swimsuits on and were eager to go. The fact that a) the water park didn't open until 10 and b) that Clover hadn't yet had breakfast absolutely failed to faze them. I edged my way around them, and through the still-open front door, shoving poodles in front of me as I went. (It was quite the entrance, though not dissimilar to most other days.)

At about 9:00 we got out the door. We were still gong to be early, but the excitement radiating of the children was too much to keep inside! After an uneventful drive... we arrived.

I would like to note that it reached over 100 degrees here today. In the PNW, we rarely get temperatures in the upper eighties, never mind the 100s. It was the perfect day to take Neptune to a water park-- if it was less than 90 degrees, he would shiver his way from one attraction to the next. That boy has absolutely 0 body fat.

Carrying on: We strolled through the warm weather, found ourselves a locker, and then scurried off to the wave pool, lazy river, and many different water slides. The children were Positively Delightful. They waited patiently in lines, didn't fight about which attraction we would go to next, and talked about how much fun they were having. (Of course, Neptune also managed to appear to be drowning Every Single Moment he was in the wave pool, but that's neither here nor there. That's just kind of how he acts in the water. And YES, I was always within arm's reach.) It was just plain old fun hanging out with them!

So, after you've taken our advice and headed off to Jetty Island for the day, I would like to recommend that you get yourself some tickets for Wild Waves, and head that direction.

After all, it is Clover and Neptune endorsed.

Monday, 27 July 2009

Sun: 1 Blythe: 0

Let's talk about red. You know what's red?
Lip stick.
Some parrots.

My. body.

Oh, sunburns. I made my Facebook status the other day was "Blythe likes having a job that leaves her with sunburns... even if she doesn't like the sunburns themselves." That pretty much sums things up.

Today the young 'uns and I went to a place called Jetty Island, in Everett. It was a bit of a drive, but was totally worth it. You take a cute little ferry out to the island, and then set the kids loose. The water is warm and shallow, and the beach is incredibly sandy. Throughout the day, Clover and Neptune would chirp, "I LOVE Jetty Island!" or "Can we come back soon? Like, tomorrow?" or "Wow, I'm so glad we came!" or "We're SO LUCKY to be here!" Warmed my heart, I tell ya. Almost as much as the sun warmed my skin.

Do you live within driving distance of Everett? Then make a pilgrimage to Jetty Island. As my kids will attest, it's totally worth it.

Actually, we'll probably see you there.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

"It's a Secret"

Today, while Clover was at soccer camp, Neptune and I went to get ice cream. I told him that this could be "our secret" because I didn't want Clover to be sad that she had missed out on a treat. Neptune understood, and promised that we would keep it to ourselves.

Later, Clover asked Neptune what we had done all afternoon while she had been at soccer.

True to his word, Neptune replied...

"It's a secret."


Saturday, 11 July 2009

They Crack Me Up

After mentioning that Neptune found another child "not a pleasure to be around," I felt it necessary to share some other excellent Things My Kids Say:

"[Our dog] can jump like a cantaloupe!" (both kids at once)

"So, you know how lions eat cantaloupe...?" (both kids)

K: "Ok, say goodbye to Blythe. She's leaving now, but you'll see her tomorrow."
Neptune (age 4): "But... who will take care of us?"

"It's not gonna happen, so you shouldn't wish for it!" (Clover)

"Are we going to drive through Spain [on the way to Montana]?" (Neptune)

"Stop steppin' on your leash, yo." (Neptune, to his dog)

"When Grace (one of their dogs) steps on me, I choke on my liver!" (Neptune)

"I'm going to go off the diving board a couple of times, but then I'm going to play with Penguin. Because I like Penguin more than I like diving boards." (Neptune)

Monday, 6 July 2009

Zoo Journey

It's good to be back.

When I arrived at work this morning, the kids were bouncing off the walls, and talked to me in very loud, fast, high-pitched voices about all the things they did in Montana after I left. According the them it was areallygreattimebutsometimesitwasabitcrazybeinginonecabinwithsomanypeople. That's not precisely what they said, but, well, you get the idea.

After I had heard many stories about their Montana adventures (including how one child was, to quote 6-year-old Neptune, "Not a pleasure to be around."), I informed the young 'uns that the marker tattoos on Clover's legs must go before we adventure out into the world. What began as a fierce scrub of marker became an hour long bubble bath for both kids. They sculpted bubble-headdresses for each other, blew bubbles (I closed the shower curtain) and had the time of their lives. Finally, I plucked them out so we could get ready to go to the zoo.

And by "plucked them out" I mean "coerced them into finally, FINALLY exiting the tub... but not without splashing most of the bathroom with water." (Actually, despite the enthusiastic splashing, they were quite cooperative when I told them that bath time was over... though I did agree to let them wash their hair first, since they SO wanted to.)

And then, after some reading, writing, math, and lunch.... we headed to the zoo! It was a bit of a gamble, weather-wise, as it had been spitting rain in the morning, but by they time we got there, it was gorgeous. The only trouble was that the pay machine in the zoo parking lot would not take my credit card, and I only had 4 dollar bills. A very kind woman handed me a dollar, saying, "I've been there!" Thank goodness for the kindness of strangers. Nice people make me so happy.

Then we spent whole afternoon at the zoo. I LOVE the Woodland Park Zoo. It's great! They have a brand new Humbolt penguin exhibit, as well as many other fabulous animals. Today, we saw the HUGE brown bears fishing. We were mere centimeters away from the bears, separated only by the glass. It was so cool! The kids and I agreed that we were really lucky.

That, my friends, was a great day.

And, in case you were wondering-- YES. The kids were a pleasure to be around.

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Home Sweet Home

You missed me, right? The whole two weeks I was gone, you were thinking to yourself, “Where has Blythe gone? I miss her, and her cupcakes, and her bubbles.” You didn’t even know I blew bubbles, did you? Though you probably assumed it. I’m a bubble-blowing type of person.

Anyway. I know you missed me. You can stop worrying now, though, because I’m back. I went with “my” kids and their grandparents on a week long sojourn to Montana, where we stayed in their cabin.

When I say “cabin” I really mean “lodge.” Or “estate.” Or “log mansion,” as A, the kids’ mom, suggested. The cabin has three stories, a walk in pantry, and a hot tub. It is beautiful, and comfortable, and truly fun to be in… but perhaps not a “cabin.” I digress.

During our week in Montana, we went on many adventures and had a great time. We picked wildflowers, strolled around the yard, went on a 3 hour horseback ride (definitely the highlight), visited the Museum of the Rockies, splashed in the hot tub, played pool and… well, you get the idea. It was fun being away with the kids, enjoying the outdoors. The kids were in ecstasies, riding in the back of a pick up and rafting down the river.

When we weren't enjoying the outdoors, we were enjoying the Museum of the Rockies, in Bozeman. Pictured here is the largest t-rex skull ever discovered. Neptune was impressed.

The kids were quite excited for the horseback ride, but when we woke up on Friday morning, it was raining. And then we heard thunder. Ai. I cannot even describe how relieved I was when the clouds cleared away for 3 hours exactly-- precisely enough time for us to go on our ride and return. The kids had the time of their lives. Clover struggled with a more stubborn horse, but did a great job hanging in there when the going got tough. Neptune was perched atop the largest horse I have ever seen, and was (rather to my surprise) totally in his element. He was totally comfortable, and loved the experience. I thought he would like it-- I did realise he would like it so much!

This is Nephi. He was my trusty companion for the trail ride.

After a week at the “cabin,” A and K (the kids’ parents) showed up and I left. That “cabin” was going to house 4 families for the next week! I’m looking forward to hearing the stories when I get to work tomorrow.

Meanwhile, my mom and I headed off for a day in Yellowstone, before heading to Missoula to visit family.

And now? Now, I am back in the PNW, and eager to begin this new week with the kids. It’s always great to travel, but sometimes the coming home is just as wonderful as the going away!