Sunday, March 29, 2015

Out Like a Lamb, Or Maybe Like a Lion?

In Camarillo, March is going out pretty much the same way it came in: Mild, mild, mild. So much for lions and lambs in this part of the world. We were reminded, though, that the weather does get somewhat more extreme as we move inland and away from the breeze wafting in from the Pacific when we took a trip to the LA Zoo to kick off Spring Break.

All Dad wanted to do last Sunday was read his funny papers in peace. Eliza thought he should add a little flourish.

The front yard continues to offer its own flourishes.

Earlier in the week, Mike had gone to Cost Plus World Market and found all sorts of unique Easter-themed treats. We all went together later on and window shopped.

Between that and the 99 Cents Store, there’s always something fun and random to try on.

Everyone kept busy with school and work activities leading into the weekend. On Thursday night, Landon accompanied Hallie to her last foster care class. A young woman who had emancipated herself after living in 10 different foster homes told her story. Landon asked if we could adopt her. He has a tender heart.

On Friday, we celebrated Easter in Landon’s class by building graham cracker houses for Peeps chicks. Lots of other parents brought in treats and helped the kids put the houses together. Royal icing makes great cement but can be a bit difficult for first graders to use. Thanks very much to all those who helped!

Thanks, Grandma, for the read aloud book! 

Landon's finished product

The warming trend from last week gave way to cooler weather where we live, but inland weather remained toasty. We braved the heat on Saturday, going to the LA Zoo with Alie, Emily, Mike, and his niece Sasha. Trails to the various animal exhibits wind up and down the hills. It’s hard to compare the LA Zoo to the Detroit Zoo. Both have their appeal and strengths. Detroit is straight forward (literally) and can be done in a day. LA takes a bit longer, and with little ones in tow, we didn’t see it all. We were glad for the Safari Shuttle that took us to the top of the hill so we could (mostly) walk downhill, but we missed some of the exhibits instead of going back up the hill. Detroit’s arctic exhibit and polar bears are hard to beat, although we found LA’s elephants to be pretty entertaining. The dry heat finally took its toll on the group, and we headed back to Grandma and Grandpa’s to take Alie home.

Jelly Belly art

Several hours later as we were leaving

On Sunday, our own little lion brought home some new prey when he walked right into the house with another alligator lizard. Unlike his last victim, this lizard still had quite a bit of fight in him. Mike was able to catch the lizard and release him outside before he either got eaten or under a piece of furniture (or both). 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Starting Spring in Malibu

The heat from last week dissipated this week, leaving sun and typically springlike weather this week. Flowers abound on the trees, bushes, shrubs, and pretty well every plant around. And yet, not a crocus, daffodil, or tulip is there to be seen. For the first time in many years, we enter spring without feeling the sense of relief from winter it has brought in years past. Kind of eerie, to be honest. Uncanny feelings notwithstanding, with beach chairs and umbrellas in hand, we press on. Pass the sunblock, will ya?

The kids had their last Imagymnation class on Monday. We really like Landon’s coach, and Landon has decided he wants to get back into gymnastics. Eliza has also been doing a lot more tumbling and climbing around the house.

Mike had to work, so Hallie and the kids picked up Mike after they got done. We had yummy Jamba Juice smoothies.

We didn’t get our act together this year for St. Patrick’s Day, so for the first time in years we missed out on soda bread and corned beef and cabbage. We’ll have to get by on memories and the sandwiches we had from The Hat last Monday after gymnastics this year. Everyone did wear green, and no one got pinched. We didn’t make leprechaun traps this year, so we got no gold either. We got cards in the mail from Granny and Grandpa O. 

Fergus didn't wear green, but he gets a pass for being a ginger.

While Hallie attended foster care class, Mike looked after the kids, who hung around in the front yard.
The neighbor across the street gave E a bit o' the luck.

"Someone help me get down?"

The roses out front have started blooming.
Mind you, this is March. Our buds in Michigan didn't look this healthy in July. We'd say it was the water, but you might have heard about this little drought thing we're having. 

The kids helped clean their bathroom Wednesday. Landon has a unique technique.

Landon showed his love in his art on Thursday.
Happy Birthday, Dr. Suess!

Adoption love!

On Thursday night while Mom was at her class and after Eliza had fallen asleep, Dad and the boy got out the globe puzzle the kids had received for Christmas and put it together.

This year’s first day of spring started off mild and sunny. Mike got to help out a little more than usual in Landon’s class. After coming home to finish work while Eliza and Hallie ran errands, he went back up to pick Landon up a little early for haircuts. They tried out a new place where Mike was able to practice his Spanish. The boys came home looking sharp!

We all hit the road to go to Zuma Beach and meet up with members of the Maygren family, following PCH along the coast.  The air wasn’t as warm as last Friday, but the water was warmer.

Being out in the sun all day must have tuckered Hallie out. It was either that, or the big breakfast of scratch waffles, chorizo, eggs, and hash browns Saturday morning. While she rested, the rest of us busied ourselves with puzzles, Legos, or books.

Later, Hallie had a hair appointment. The kids played some out front while Mike puttered. It’s a tough life, but someone’s gotta live it. 

Landon got Detroit Tigers-themed pajamas in the mail. And with that, we say good night!
"go dey dhrouwt tiegers!!!! óóó"