Monday, September 27, 2010

Tahoe...hiking, biking, bears, and more...

Ever since Jason came home from his deployment our landlords had been offering up their cabin in Lake Tahoe for us to get away and enjoy ourselves. It was very nice of them to let us go up for a weekend and we life finally slowed down enough to take advantage of their kind offer.
Since the cabin had lots of room we decided to invite the Welch and Caruso families to join in on the fun...and fun we had!!!
The girls (plus the kiddos) headed out early Friday afternoon with a car full...3 kids in carseats, lots of luggage, food, and a rooftop carrier!!! We hit some traffic in Sacramento but the kids did great and we made it to the cabin!

First things first we unloaded the car after some issues getting the rooftop carrier open...wouldn't you know that just making a phone call to the guys would magically make it's a good thing because Christina might have frozen in the frigid temps in the 50's...hehe!
Once we got things unloaded it was time for some serious dancing...who would have known the Kidz Bop cd was so cool!!!
Ellie does a great robot!
Easton did some break dancing and Riley put on a great show too!
The guys left pretty late but we were nice and waited up for them...they drove Jason's truck up and it was loaded with more luggage, three sets of golf clubs, five bikes, a bike trailer, two tricycles, and ice was quite the site and the guys did a fab job loading it all precisely!

Riley slept pretty horribly the first night but we were just excited to be there and as usual we feel the lack of sleep much more than she does!

The kids had fun swinging on the back porch in the morning!

Riley fell in love with this duck and "mothered" it all weekend!
At some point in the morning we heard lots of loud banging coming from our bedroom upstairs and I went up to find this!
Riley and Easton were playing in her bed and Ellie was supervising!
As if that wasn't exciting enough...we had a very special visitor Saturday morning!
Meet the bear!
Joe had gone out on the back porch to take in the crisp air and the beautiful scenery and then suddenly spotted the bear and came in to share the news!
So like crazy people we all jetted out the back door to check out the bear and he was SO close!

He didn't cause too much trouble...just poked around for some food I suppose!
The kids were in shock and I think the fact that Riley has seen "pretend" bears for so long and she now saw a REAL bear within a few feet was a little scary for her!!! For a few days after anytime the bear was mentioned she would grab one of us and get scared! She's over it now and loves to tell people how she saw a bear in Lake cute!
Jason was talking to the bear....saying "hey bear...come here bear" was awesome!
But the bear was not as amused with us as we were with him and he strolled down the street and went on to a neighbor's house!
After all that excitement we got ready to go hiking!
We decided to hike Eagle Falls and it was INCREDIBLE!
Here we are ready to go! Riley was stoked about "hiking"...of course I would be stoked too if I could ride on someone's back the whole way!
Here are Chris and Jason with the kiddos!
The hike overall was smooth sailing but there were some parts that were rockier than others...Ellie did awesome and hiked the entire way!
We made it to the waterfalls and they were so pretty!

We kept on going and we made it up high enough to get a breathtaking view of Lake Tahoe and Emerald Bay!
Photo op!
Group shot!

We kept on going with news that there was a much smaller lake we could hike to and that it was worth it!
I tell ya...I'm not sure how people don't believe in God when you are able to experience this kind of beauty!

And we made it to Eagle was so worth it!
Another photo op!
And another great group shot thanks to Christina's fabulous self timer skills!
We found a little beachy spot and let the kids play around!
The water was frigid but I think I have come to the conclusion that kids don't feel that level of cold until they are like 12 or something...they ran around in the water like it was nothing!
Love this little girl!
So after a short break at the lake we headed back and look who tuckered out on the way back!
The dads were pretty tuckered out too!

Riley was completely zonked...sweet's tough "hiking"
We headed back to the cabin and scarfed down some food and put the kiddos down for naps!
This big kiddo took a nap too!

The rest of us were super busy on our see we all play Words with Friends would think we would have just gone old school and pulled out a scrabble board but no way!
So after napping we hit the road for some more outdoor fun!
The kids were so excited they wore their bike helmets in the car..Christina was slightly offended because she thought they were just scared of her driving..haha!
Riley and Easton rode together in the bike trailer and to say they had a blast would be a total understatement...Chris pulled them on his bike but I could hear Riley belly laughing the entire ride!
There was a great bike trail right in our neighborhood...funny thing is we didn't realize it was so close and we loaded up the bikes and put the kids in the car to literally drive two streets over to start our bike ride!
We biked all the way to the lake...
Group shot
After our biking trip we headed back to the cabin to pick up the Caruso's and we headed to a local pizza place for dinner!
Riley had her first root beer and I can tell ya it won't be her last!
Here she is making silly faces with Joe!
Saturday night brought some better rest for Riley and therefore us and the guys headed out super early to play some golf!
Us girls were pretty lazy in the morning...we let the kids play, watch cartoons, and we had a yummy breakfast!
Once we all started getting stir crazy we decided to head to the beach!
It was a beautiful day and the weather was just perfect!
The kids had a great time splashing yet again in the frigid water and playing in the sand!
Ellie and Riley jumping the waves!
Our little beach girl!
Family pic! Crazy that a week later the first round of snow fell at Lake Tahoe!

What a great and memorable weekend!
Thanks Welch's and Caruso's for such a great time!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Time for Tea

So back to Jennie's shower a few weeks ago...we have had so many baby boys born this past year that we were all excited to have a girly shower and a tea party was a perfect fit!
We were also excited to shower Jennie and Evan...such a special couple!
Jennie and Evan have a little boy named Owen who they never got to meet as he passed away during his delivery just a year ago. Jennie started coming to our Bible study just a few weeks after losing Owen and it's safe to say she has changed all of our lives. She has been such an inspiration this past year as she was so open and honest about grieving the loss of her son. She and Evan were blessed with getting pregnant again just a few months after this tragedy and in just a few short weeks she will deliver a little girl...and we are all covering them in prayer and have faith that they will bring home a healthy baby. So with all of this it was such an honor to be able to shower them with love and gifts.
We had a tea party theme complete with hot tea, fancy sandwiches, scones, fruit salad, and cupcakes! We asked that everyone wear a fun hat and it was great to see all the awesome hats! I didn't have one so I borrowed one of Hannah's and worked some magic on it...spray painted it, added some ribbon and flowers, and voila...a great tea party hat!
We had a great showing and filled up the house with lots of great ladies!
Here's the setup before everyone arrived.

Hannah, the gourmet chef of the group, made the sandwiches and they were incredible!

I made lemon cream cupcakes with lemon buttercream icing...yummy!

We had a money tree for Jennie and Evan to help them get a new stroller!

Here's all the tea and beverages!

We did lots of chatting...
The kids were very good...they shared a little hot dog lunch together!
They also spent lots of time in the playroom!
Riley wanted to be right in the middle of Jennie opening presents..imagine that!
She fell in love with this cute towel and wore it around the rest of the shower!
We all had fun watching Jennie open up super cute clothes...who doesn't love baby girl clothes?
Here's a group shot of all us girls with Jennie!
What a fun day!
We can't wait to meet this little girl and find out her name!