Sunday, July 10, 2016

Fizzled Fireworks, Beach Bliss, and Pancakes

We started the week by celebrating Independence Day with a flag ceremony and pancakes, took a trip to the beach later in the week, and finished up with chocolate chip pancakes. Everything is better with chocolate!

Mike and the kids got up bright and early on Monday to help set up chairs outside of church for the annual flag ceremony and pancake breakfast. Brother Lassen, our stake patriarch, gave a speech about patriotic symbols and sacrifice, and we sang patriotic tunes before digging into our meal. The weather this month so far has been quite mild (not that we’d want to jinx it, not having air conditioning and all), and we actually had overcast skies until right before we left.

We spent much of the rest of the morning watching Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies. One of the cartoons had a patriotic theme. Remember Porky Pig in “Old Glory”?

We did go out later during the day to have a water balloon fight. Hallie bought some amazing self-closing water balloons attached to a mass of plastic straws. While our experience with the balloons wasn’t perfect, we did have fun, and it was a lot less tedious than filling each balloon individually.

In the evening, Grandma and Grandpa O. and Alie came over, and then we all went down to the empty lot next to Dave Maddox’s palm tree farm for tri tip barbecue and pot luck before watching fireworks. Or at least that was the plan. As the sun set and it got dark and no fireworks could be seen, the crowd started getting restless. Children (including Eliza) started falling asleep, and families (including Gma and Gpa and Alie) started heading for the exit gate. When the floodlights at the high school turned on, we finally had to admit defeat: No fireworks this 4th. Hallie is not a big fan of fireworks, so she didn’t care. More than anything, she was thrilled to have time with friends!

On Tuesday morning, we went to see Finding Dory at the movie theater. After it ended, Hallie said it was the best movie she had seen in a long time! Then she let on that she fell asleep about 10 minutes into the movie and woke up shortly before it ended. Best movie, indeed. The kids earned free meals to some local restaurants, so we headed to Johnny Rocket’s for lunch. We had a great server who made sure we were well taken care of during our lunch. Unfortunately, Hallie overindulged on small amounts of the yummy popcorn and other food and felt very ill by the end of the day. This new baby stomach is still a learning process for her.

While walking Roxy on Wednesday the trio ran into Levi and Mian (Roxy’s owners) who were visiting a lemonade stand. What a fun treat to have on our walk. Grandma M., Cru, and Sawyer met Hallie and the kids at a park close to where Roxy lives. Everyone had a great time playing until Sawyer fell. She was crying, which was to be understood. But no one realized she broke her arm until the next morning when Aunt Carly took her to the doctor.  Poor little cutie pie!

It’s been a week or so since Hallie went to the gym, and Thursday morning she met her trainer Jessica, and they worked out hard and quick. Before working out Jessica weighed Hallie, and she is close to the milestone of 65 lbs. How exciting to see an average loss of 2.5 lbs since January 7! Right soon after Hallie headed to Bandit’s Barbecue with the Lunch Bunch. Hallie had been really looking forward to BBQ food for nearly a week but was sorely disappointed when her kid’s meal order came. There was no overeating at this meal.

Mike took Eliza walking Roxy on Friday. Mian tells us that Roxy knows when we’re about to arrive and gets all excited for her walk.

Hallie took Landon to gymnastics early so levels 4 and 5 could play games before gymnastics started. Hallie headed out a little after 9 and eventually ended up at Grandpa and Grandma M’s, where they visited for a bit. Close to 11:00 Hallie headed back to Victory to watch Landon, and then they ran errands when they were done.

It was supposed to be pizza and a movie night on Friday night, so we were going to make our own pita pizzas. The kids wanted to play outside instead, so that is what they did while Mike taught online and Hallie ate her pizza.

While Hallie got her nails done on Saturday by Seaward Beach in Ventura, Mike took the kids down for some time on the sand. We came home a little sunkissed. Well, maybe a little more than a little. Mike’s a bit of a redneck now, and his calves got a little toasty, and as Landon took a shower before bed, Mike saw that Landon is going to tan up really nicely. That is if he doesn’t peel. Mike did warn the boy to wear his rash guard. Eliza, the other hand, benefitted both from having worn her rash guard and from having a complexion that takes the sun in stride, getting a lovely tan for her time outdoors.

The afternoon was topped off with some yummy fish tacos from Seaward Fish and Chips. Hallie spent time in the afternoon cleaning up Eliza’s room and our room. The kids spent time riding bikes the rest of the day, playing at the park, eating watermelon, and watching more Looney Tunes.

Sunday, Mike spent time teaching the kids how to play UNO. Bless his soul. It helped that the kids were quick studies! We spent time at church in the afternoon, and we are still getting to know many people in our ward.

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