Monday, August 25, 2008


I wasn't sure if I could do it after our week of travels, but we started homeschooling kindergarten with Allia today. I was so glad when I heard that school bus go by at 7:30am...just as she was waking up...that she wasn't on it! Our schooling went wonderfully. Of course, it is still new and exciting, so we will see how it goes later. The big trick will be keeping Mariana happy and feeling like she is getting my attention. She was a little set off this morning that I was spending so much time with Allia. I have activities for her too, but I am trying to just focus on getting the routine down with Allia first. Happy schooling to everyone out there!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Our Cruise

Austin's parents generously treated the whole family (them, us and his two sisters) to a 5 day cruise to Progresso and Cozumel, Mexico. We all had such a wonderful time! We have never been on a family vacation...just trips to visit family members, so this was really a treat!

What do you do with stir crazy children who have been traveling all day and are now on a ship? Let them jump from the windowsill onto their grandparents' bed of course!

Sitting on the windowsill watching the sun come up after a morning shower

Fun on the ship...the girls loved the pools, of course!

Happy Birthday, a little early...
Our second afternoon on the ship, Austin booked me for a 75 minute hot stone massage and sent me off to the spa! It was so wonderful. I am known for being frugal when it comes to things like that, so he wouldn't tell me how much it cost. I was skeptical, but about halfway through I thought, "Whatever it cost, this is so worth it!" It was amazing! Thanks, hubby. :-)

Formal night

A day in Progresso...we just toured the city and beach briefly here

Gloria received a lot of attention on the cruise, especially from the Mexicans, for her teether of choice...her feet!

Collecting shells on the beach before we head back

Our stop in Cozumel
We were so blessed to find an awesome deal with our own private taxi driver and a beautiful private beach with a restaurant and swimming pool. Of course, the water is so beautiful and clear there, that we really just wanted to swim on the beach...except our delicate Allia. She didn't like the salt after a while, so she and Lita hung out at the pool!

We saw lots of little fish swimming around with us in this beautiful water!

Mariana had the most fun of all. She had her floaties and thoroughly enjoyed floating around, riding the gentle waves as they came. She would get upset if we tried to hold her. It was so cute!

The girls sported their Mexican dresses from Lita at dinner on our last night. Everyone looked so nice!

Gloria slept really well the first two nights on board, but it was downhill from there. So we were up to see the sunrise the last two mornings. I didn't have my camera for what would have been the perfect photo the first morning we saw it, but here is the sunrise on our last morning there as we were reaching shore.

On the last night in the dining room, the Maitre D' fooled Austin by saying that he had some bad news and that due to inclement weather, we would have to stay on the ship and go to Jamaica instead of docking the next morning. Austin was really excited for a moment!

We are so spoiled to restaurant-style dining at almost every meal. Coming home is quite an adjustment after such a nice vacation! When we told Allia it was our last day, she asked if she could just live on the cruise! Then on our way home, she said she wanted to go again. We told her hopefully we will someday, but she insisted that she did not want a break inbetween and we needed to go back immediately!

Thanks so much, Lito and Lita!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

We are off...

We will be gone this whole week on vacation with Austin's family. Details and photos to come when we return...and after we recover from traveling with three little ones for a week!!!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Happy Solemnity of the Assumtion of Mary and...

Happy Birthday to my sweet Austin! The old geezer turns 30 today! ;-) Lucky for me I am still a young twenty-something (at least for another month!).

What a day for celebration. We started the day bright and early with 7am mass, at which all 3 girls behaved beautifully, followed by a quick breakfast of birthday cake. Then he was off to work, and the girls and I colored pictures of Mary and then ran errands. This afternoon we will have a special tea party (pictures to come hopefully) and then a yummy dinner out to continue the celebration of two of my favorite people! Thank you, God, for the life of my wonderful husband and for your mother, Mary!

The tea party...

And my little "walker" who is pulling up on my hands to walk every chance she gets and tries to use anything else she can...gotta keep up with those sisters!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Neighborhood block party

It is that time of year again....

We actually entered the float contest and parade this year, and received honorable mention behind some great friends of ours, and we received a free pass to the children's museum!

Here are our recycling pirates (theme was trash to treasure, recycle). Mariana sports her aluminum foil sword.

Allia was really going for the disgruntled pirate look here...actually she was melting in the heat! And you can't see our sign from this angle, but it said, "Please Recycle...or Walk the Plank!"

The first prize winners, the M family...aren't they cute?! They made a recycle train

Unfortunately, we had to leave early this year, so we were unable to enter the crazy dance contest...things to look forward to for next year! ;-)

Tummy time, times three!

Monday, August 11, 2008

A visit and a tea

We went to see Austin's grandparents, Uncle, Aunt and cousins this weekend. Lala held a "tea" (aka big party with all of her friends...and this time some of ours too) for Gloria which ended up doubling as a birthday party for all of the August birthdays (Austin, Lolo, cousin Serina). It was lots of fun!

The cousins had so much fun together, but I didn't get many good pictures because they were moving so fast! Here they are just hanging out for a bit.

The giant cake!

Allia's godfather with our godson Stephen and Gloria

The shark song gets 'em every time!


Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Other fun

More help from grandparents when hubby goes on last-minute work trip

My old cabbage patch dolls...they love them!

How to entertain a baby...a Whataburger straw!

We will be out of town visiting family this weekend, but hopefully I will have some fun stuff to post when we get back!

7 Months old today!

We love you, Gloria! You are getting to be SO much fun! :-)

Friday, August 1, 2008

Party time

The girls dressed up for a friend's princess birthday party this morning....and here are some shots of my polka dotted princesses in action (polka dots were definitely the theme this morning...they even picked polka dotted tissue paper to decorate the gift!)

Last Day

Allia's last day of swim lessons was yesterday. Austin took her for parent day, but unfortunately they let them play the whole time instead of showing the parents what they learned!!! She did go across those lily pads you see in the background of the photo all by herself, which was impressive, but otherwise Daddy didn't get to see much. I have some photos from her second to last day... of her stronger skills

She also learned to dive to the bottom for rings really well!

They played red light, green light, and the other two kids in her group just walked/ran across the pool, but Allia actually tried to swim across, so she kept "losing" the game! She is a winner in my book, though (of course!).