Monday, September 29, 2008

Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard

Anna and Hailey have officially been back in school for five weeks now, and I am finally getting to posting the first day of school pictures. Hailey is in first grade this year, which means a full 6 1/2 hours a day that I have only two children - can you smell the freedom? Anna is in fourth grade - I don't know how they do things anymore, but when I was in school fourth grade was part of the "upper grades" - I can't believe Anna is that old! So far they are both loving school, except for the discrepancy over what time they should get there. Since we live across the street, they walk to school every morning, and Anna is of the opinion that they should leave here no later than 7:55 (school starts at 8:20) so that she will have time to play soccer, while Hailey feels that 8:10 leaves plenty of time to get over there before the bell rings and they can then go straight to class. Many a morning has been filled with the sounds of Anna urging Hailey to hurry up and Hailey replying that she isn't ready to leave yet and that it is too early. I finally started having them switch days so that they go early one day and on time the next. That makes everyone happy, right? Wrong. But at least they are unified in the belief that Mommy is unfair. And once they are off to school, I have 6 1/2 glorious hours before I have to hear any more about it. Yay school.

Hot Fun in the Summertime

Ok, still playing catch-up here, but I am getting closer. In August, my friends Brandi and Stephanie were here visiting their in-laws (they happen to be married to twins) and I was happy to be able to spend some time hanging out with them while they were here. We were also with my friend Vanessa (who happens to be their sister-in-law as well - she is married to the twins' older brother.) We went to the park, Costa Vida (several times - yum), shopping, Lake Clementine (with 12 kids no less), and a birthday party at a bounce place (lots of fun racing over the inflatables.) I was so glad to have them here to play with and was sad when they went home - miss you girls!

Stephanie, Vanessa, Brandi, and me at Lake Clementine

Smiling pretty before going down the big inflatable slide at Bounce-U

Monday, September 15, 2008

I Need A Hero

August 27th, 2008 - a truly outstanding day in the lives of those in the Joyner household. For on that day, we were visited by someone so amazing, so incredible, so Super, if you will, that none of us will ever forget it. On that Wednesday, which started so much like any other day, was the day that Superman came to 2041 Swetzer Rd.

To celebrate his 4th birthday, Adam wanted a Superman party, at which he of course would be portraying the part of the man himself. He had big plans: "Mommy, I will be in the bedroom, and when everyone is there you say "Here comes Superman!" and I will come out." With a cape from Six Flags and the infamous symbol on his chest (made by his mommy), as well as the Superman theme song downloaded from the internet, he was ready to go. I would like to note that he was not coached in any way as to how his entrance would go - it was all him.

I made his cake - a chocolate box recipe to which I added sour cream, chocolate chips, Hershey's kisses, and chocolate pudding mix - and the frosting which was of the cream cheese variety. Yum. I made goodie bags and set the table and we were good to go.

We played a version of Hot Potato with Kryptonite instead of a spud, Pin the Symbol on Superman's Chest, and musical chairs with the Superman Theme. Then we enjoyed cake and presents. Overall, it was a very successful birthday.

How old are you Adam?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Having Fun in the Warm California Sun

Since we didn't manage to get out much this summer due to the smoke and heat, and the furthest the kids got was Pa's house in Alta, we wanted to take them somewhere fun. We settled for Six Flags in Vallejo, since with two coupons from Lunchables we got two of our kids in for free. (Not that it still wasn't way too expensive.) We left Jonathan at home with his Aunt Jamie, and headed off to the Bay Area. It was a beautiful day - 107 in Roseville, but only 85 in Vallejo.

Our foray into the park started with some excitement. While trying to find our way to the kid's area (the park map was wildly vague and unhelpful) we passed by a Ben and Jerry's stand, from which came a women's voice calling out to us to call 911. She had been in line getting a drink when the guy inside fell to the ground and started seizing. There was no one else around, and she was trying to take care of him and couldn't get to her phone. Jon ran inside the stand to help, dialing 911 and then handing the phone to me. There were no workers around to call, and it seemed like several minutes before one came by and said that she didn't have her walkie-talkie on her and went to find one to call for help. Meanwhile on the phone I finally got through to a 911 operator, who asked me where we were in the park, and like I said before, the map was not helpful and I had no idea where I was, so I just started describing things to her - I'm sure she found my "we just passed the Butterfly House" very helpful. In the end, it took the park EMTs FOREVER to get there, but the man was coming around at that point, and we all vacated so they could do their job. If I were you, I would try to avoid having a medical emergency in a Six Flags.

Anyhow, the rest of our day went without incident. We got soaked on the river raft ride - I was the first one to get wet with a huge stream of water right down my back - good times. Hailey and Anna rode more big rides than I did - after my trip on the Medusa I decided not to ride anything else since I was not gripped by a desire to see my lunch again. But we all had a pretty good day and it was good quality family time. I think, however, that we will stick to Disneyland in the future.

Hailey's review of our day

Adam dancing after lunch - yes, I am aware the video is sideways...

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Go Shorty, it's your birthday

This year, Anna achieved the ripe old age of 9 (we are looking into a walker and those bars that you use for getting in and out of the bathtub if anyone knows a good distributor.) To celebrate the fact that she survived another year of being attacked, abused, and misused by her siblings as well as relied on very heavily by her parents to deflect said attacks, abuse, and misuse from themselves, we threw her a barbecue.

Anna with her favorite present - a GameBoy from Aunt Tara's family.

Anna and Jon showing their genetic link - her goofyness definitely comes from the Joyner side.

Pa, Grandma, Anna, and Aby - I am pretty sure we have a picture just like this from the day Anna was born.