Monday, April 27, 2015

Easter x3

I try really hard to do fun things with our girls and family. However, I also am, hmmmm, how should I word "cheap" so it doesn't sound so bad? Frugal? Let's go with frugal. I don't like to break the bank on things they more than likely won't remember and aren't really necessities. So, whenever I hear of a potentially fun and even better free event, I try to take advantage. For years we have gone to the city of Perris' Easter activity. I have a picture of Peyton every year with the same Easter bunny, it's free and has always been a very fun day. This year we planned to go back since it's not far from where we are now, but I also discovered our little association does something for the members too. So, we went to that as well. My kids love to be outside, LOVE candy, and enjoy activities, so both of these events hit the nail on the head.

Our association party had a lunch, Easter egg hunt (which we got there too late to participate in), picture with the Easter bunny, and a raffle so large almost every family won. We had fun and it was close enough to walk to, which is always a plus.

The Perris activity gets larger and larger every year. I was a little (understatement) bugged at the families who think the picture with the Easter bunny was a paid family affair. People were literally taking 10 minutes to get 20 people in, looking and apparently the perfect photo. Come on guys, this is a get in, snap a picture, and laugh over the results kind of thing. One mom was running in- fixing hair, running back in- adjusting clothes, demanding every kid to look, smile, and be perfect. I wanted to scream. While I was loosing my mind in line, Wes took the kids to touch the bunnies through the fence (rather than wait in that ridiculous line), participate in the egg hunt, as well as play the other games they had out. They all had a good ole' time and joined me in line minutes before it was our turn. Jovie was not thrilled with this Easter bunny because he didn't give her a sucker upon meeting. She refused to smile and told me for weeks afterward, "I no smile for the Easter Bunny"--- little stinker. After the photo she got her candy and then high-fived him as she walked away, thus the stink face in all the photos. Past years bunny photos here.

We dyed our Easter eggs the Friday before Easter. The girls loved it! Jovie loved it so much she dyed just about every finger on her hand, refusing to use the nifty utensils I had provided.

On actual Easter Sunday we stayed home all comfy cozy. Did our own little egg hunt after waking up. The kids played with their new sand toys and pretended to be at the beach as we watched conference. I vote conference and Easter line up every year it was such a wonderful way to keep the Savior as the focus of the holiday.

After conference and naps we headed over to the Aleman Sr. household for the rest of the afternoon and evening. We did the traditional money egg hunt and our family did pretty well. The girls just this week spent their money on some toys at Target. We are implementing the idea that for any new toys they need to spend their own money for now on. So this was great practice. We of course ate good food and had fun with cousins. It was a wonderful day.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Final Leg: Seattle

 After the fun morning of eating, snacking and walking around Pike's Market, we headed down towards the older part of the city to do an underground city tour. Yes, it is exactly what it sounds like, a tour of old Seattle. The city that existed before the big fire and rebuilding the city above where it is now. Haven't heard of this? I hadn't either until Danny and Sarah did this last year too, and told us how much they liked it. So we looked into it and it sounded fascinating, so we decided to do the tour. For more info go here. It was very interesting to learn the history of the city, and walk below the sidewalks on narrow wooden pathways, past the facades of the old historical buildings that once existed and were used.

 After the tour we went uptown to take the monorail to the Space Needle. The view from the top was awesome. Cold, and awesome! We played some I-Spy at the top and enjoyed the view for a while. We couldn't go to Seattle without going to the Space Needle, right?!

We did a lot of walking on this trip, and the boys were a little too enthused to use these umbrellas as a cane like tool. I think we had more than 1 conversation about them, which just goes to show what a understated happiness they became to them. Laughable to say the least. I had to snap this photo on our walk to our hotel to remember the vacation with the umbrellas. They were also walking in-sync with them... just to add to the comedy of walking behind them to Taryn and I.
We rushed to get to the airport from this point. But, what I really think happened was Ryan wanted revenge on Taryn for forgetting Catan so he pretended we had to be at the airport then so that she couldn't get the dessert she really wanted. Because we got there plenty early and could have definitely made the pit stop we had talked about making. Jokes on you Taryn! Next time if you want ice cream, don't forget the game.

With the time we had as we waited for our plane, we busted out Ticket to Ride on an airport table and spent the rest of our time playing and reminiscing on the wonderful time we had just had. It was a sad day knowing our vacation was coming to an end.
 The vacation ended as we dropped the McCooks off at home and headed to Wes' parents to pick up our girls. Ryan left his phone in our car so the next morning I met Taryn off the freeway to drop it off. It just so happened that we, and our girls were dressed the same. So naturally we had to take a photo.

The cruise, Canada and Seattle were ALL awesome! What a wonderful time we had. Makes me soooo excited for the next trip! We better start planning.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Seattle: Part 2

Monday, Monday, Monday. It was a busy, fun, fast day.

Like I said, a major part of this (and really, let's be honest any) vacation is the food. So with the help of Yelp, as well as recommendations from friends and family, we had a good list of places we wanted to visit and more importantly eat at. Our first stop of the day was "The Crumpet Shop" in Pike's Market, which was also just a few blocks away from where we were staying. So we grabbed some umbrellas from the hotel lobby and were on our way. We heard of this place from my brother and his wife who went to Seattle last year. They highly recommended it, but I was iffy. What is a crumpet and how could they possible be very good? Well, the Yelp reviews sided with them, and we thought we might as well give it a shot. This place may be my favorite place we ate at on this trip... though I am not sure because we ate a lot of good food. Crumpets are like soft, sweet English Muffins with air bubbles in them. Stick some sweet or savory toppings on top and it is simply delectable. They far exceeded my expectations.
 Our "get crumpt" look (or if you have no idea what I am talking about... get crunk)

After indulging in English delicacies we headed to the market for some shopping. It was different from what I was expecting, but I am not even sure what I was expecting exactly. We got to see some fish being flung, thanks to the Japanese tour group there. We tasted some local food and again ate our way through the market and round about area. And we saw the real 1st Starbucks, but were not willing to wait in line to go in. And it was the actual first Starbucks not the fake 1st Starbucks we saw the night before... though that was much funnier.

Another favorite, which is a must go in my opinion if you ever find yourself in Seattle is Beecher's. Hands down the best mac' n cheese! We went there twice. We watched them separate the curds and whey, and tried fresh curds (which couldn't sound more disgusting btw), but wasn't too bad in reality.

What was truly disgusting was the gum wall in an alley right near the market. I wasn't expecting to be as grossed out by it as I was. It smelled like, well, a lot of gum and it truly made my stomach turn. We quickly added our own gum to the wall and took a photo to prove it, and left that nasty space. I don't know why I feel the need to be part of every disgusting or weird tradition but I do. Part of my disease known as FOMO... you know, Fear of Missing Out. It also might be from my mom who made us spit into rivers, lakes and oceans in order to become "one with them". I did this into the Canadian part of the Pacific from our boat on our cruise, but think I became one with Wes, Ryan and Taryn thanks to the wind. Whoops. I made up for it at Stanley Park where I successful spit into the bay.

And this was all done before about noon. I'll finish our day in a later post.