Saturday, February 25, 2017

School Days

School is where a lot of our winter fun is happening this year and where I'm taking most of my photos lately.  Orelia had fun being the center of attention and celebrating her half birthday at school awhile back.

Bennett enjoys lots of things at school, especially if they are outside.

After a semester of ignoring the horse in the play yard, Bennett finally gave it some attention.

He grabbed some dirt and fed it some "goldfish," but the dirt fell out of the mouth so Bennett said the horse didn't like it.  Ha!  Little kids are the best.

Orelia has been spending lots of time setting up elaborate tea parties with her friends and playing doctor of "family" (recently she prefers to be the misbehaving baby in the family).  Pretend play is her jam, but it doesn't always take the best photos, so instead I capture her outdoor exuberance.

 Bennett was excited to debut his new Lighting McQueen umbrella on the walk to school.

He's not too keen on rain jackets, so an umbrella it is!

 Unlike Orelia who bemoans every cloudy or (God forbid) rainy day, Bennett relishes our wet winter and all the puddles and mud it has brought into his life.

 Every week Bennett asks his teacher to bring out his favorite truck puzzles, and he will sit and do each puzzle two or three times before moving onto his next item on the agenda.

It's so much fun playing and photographing my kids at school.  I'm so lucky to be there to witness them in their element.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Even in the Bath

 Even in the bath my kids are the same as the ever were.  Orelia is wearing a swim dress here, but you just can't see it because she's wearing it "strapless."  She's also wearing her "waterproof" headband (thanks, McDonald's), because God forbid one goes a millisecond without a headband.

Bennett, of course, is less concerned about his attire and more concerned about which three (more like nine) trucks he is allowed to bring into the bath that day.  Because, again, God forbid one goes a millisecond without trucks within arm's reach.

I can't remember a bath where Orelia hasn't worn a bathing suit - I think the last time it happened was over a year ago.  And once we started letting Bennett take trucks into the bath, there was no turning back.  I sure do love these kiddos for being who they are - 24 hours a day.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The Best Weekend

 January ended with an amazing weekend with one of my best friends (and a new best friend for Orelia).

Orelia and Arianna have only met on two visits prior to this one, but they were two peas in a pod from the second Arianna stepped off the airplane.  

The weekend started with Orelia ducking out of school early to head to the airport to pick up our friends.  We immediately went to a giant indoor play place since I wanted to start the visit off with a bang. The girls had a blast, obviously, and then enjoyed the first of three "sleepovers" together in Orelia's room.

Orelia not only took to Arianna like a fish to water, but she also become as attached to Anika as I am.  Every time I tried to take a photo of Anika and Arianna together, Orelia insisted she hop in the photo too.

 It was a gorgeous weekend and we brought our guests to our favorite park at the top of San Francisco (where we also took them last visit).

It was so funny to see the girls play in the same place they did over a year ago - they sure have changed a lot.

 Orelia's mood, as always varied from serious to


 Photos of Orelia swinging are a thousand times more fun now that she can pump herself.

 This park really does have the best views of any park we have visited.

 Here is Orelia and her second mommy again.  She uttered the words "I wish Anika was my mommy" on multiple occasions.

 But at least she was willing to take some photos with me too.

 Anika is a great photographer and took some photos of me and Orelia while Bennett was napping one day.

 I used to have so many photos of both Orelia and Bennett in my arms or John's arms, but now the kids are always running off on their own and the parents are never in the shot.

 I still don't have any photos of John and the kids, but at least Anika got some great mommy daughter pictures.

Later that weekend all drove up to the Bay Area Discovery Museum in Sausalito for some fun.

 Both my kids love this place, and Arianna felt the same.

Orelia and Arianna loved exploring every nook and cranny of the place together. 

  Bennett, naturally, loved doing some construction work.

There is a water play area, and Bennett donned his sister's sunglasses and had a bit of a mad scientist look going for awhile.

 Orelia and I were so, so sad to say goodbye to our best friends, but it was an amazing visit and we can't wait to see them again soon!  It is so fun to see how one of my best friends has a kid who seems like such a perfect match for my own.  What a blessing!

Friday, February 3, 2017

Go Big

 No one loves a party more than Orelia.

No one loves to celebrate a holiday more than Orelia.

 Well, this is true only if she has the appropriately themed clothes and accessories to wear.

 We got a giant pack of these awful "glasses" to give out with Orelia's valentines at school this year, and she can't wait.

 She is especially excited to wear her "Valentine's dress," the one she's wearing here - since it has gold hearts all over it and comes with a matching bow.

 She of course also has a heart headband and a heart bracelet on as well, because you better go big or go home.

Her enthusiasm is catching and I find myself buying decorations at Target every chance I get since I don't want to miss out on the chance to relish these fun over the top holiday times with my girl.  Happy Valentine's Month!