Monday, April 3, 2017

Play L.A.

The boys and I had a fun week in L.A. visiting Shelley and her family over her kids' Spring Break. Westin loved cousin time, and being with the Cannon family is always so fun. Thank you for letting us come play with you! Our week was packed with a day at the L.A. Zoo, beach time, the California Science Center, playing outside, eating delicious food, Beauty and the Beast, Walt Disney Concert Hall, eating more delicious food, seeing Rachel, watching La La Land, and just having so much fun being with family. We missed Michael! We're excited that he's going to be with us for our next vacation later this month.

Got home early from work two times this week around 5:00, which has never happened this year. Ironic that he came home to an empty house those days since we were already in L.A... but, you should see his garden. There's not a weed to be found, and he cleaned the house on Monday and then was amazed that it stayed clean all week. When he told me how that felt surprising, I had all these memories flood back from our newlywed days when I would clean the house once a week. I forgot I used to be able to do that, instead of picking everything up multiple times a day... Oh, toddlers. We got back on Saturday afternoon and the house was kind of crazy before Westin went to bed that night. Michael seemed surprised by this, and I said, "So you're telling me that you're kind of amazed that all the work you did disappeared so quickly by the efforts of your kid? Because....I get that, Michael." I really do. But he's still glad we're back :)

Loved being with Shelley's family so much. I really love being around and learning from the Moms in my life that I love. This was my first trip away from home with two kids without Michael, and Westin has reached a new level of tantrum-throwing in the last little while, so that part was kind of emotionally overwhelming at times. Also, Westin threw up three minutes before we arrived at Shelley's house, and after we got that situation under control I promptly set a hot pad on fire. We made quite an entrance... But, then things calmed down and Westin was luckily just carsick instead of actually sick. Apart from that, this trip was so rejuvenating. On my drive home I was drinking Dr. Pepper and snacking on delicious snacks (thank you, Shelley!) while listening to a great podcast series that a friend recommended (God-Centered Mom) and I just felt really grateful that I live close to a few family members during residency. That was meant to be.

Needed cousin time, and he always acts like a bigger kid around cousins and it's fun to watch. He did really, really well with potty training on our trip and I was so grateful for that. He only had one accident, and he did a great job at being good at telling me he needed to go even when we were out and about and busy. He's becoming more and more strong-willed (a.k.a. being two years old) but he's also still very sweet too. He calls all older (trusted) males dad or grandpa, so he kept referring to Tony as Dad all week. I'd remind Westin that he was Uncle Tony, so then Westin would start saying Uncle Dad. Then he'd go back to dropping the uncle and stick with Dad again. He didn't call Shelley mom, but he did call me Shelley a couple times? And he loved playing with each of his cousins sooo much. He has been asking about each of them by name ever since we got home. He slept in a pack n play while we were there and he filled that thing up, this kid needs to move on to wide open spaces. He doesn't seem into that idea though. Tonight when I told him he could start sleeping in his big boy bed whenever he wanted and then he could share a room with Bennett when baby moved into the crib, his eyes got big and thoughtful. Then he said, "No, baby doesn't sleep in Westin's crib, Westin sleeps in Westin's crib. Baby sleeps in the green bed." (Our Pack n Play is green.) So, Bennett, don't get any roommate ideas soon.

Is a great napper either on the go or in his bed, and I'm grateful for that. We had a fun-filled, busy week, and Bennett took naps when he needed to all through our different activities. He didn't sleep great at night, he randomly started to want to stay awake and make happy, loud noises at 4am. Better than crying? But no where near as good as sleeping. Then he'd finally fade back off to sleep and Westin would be up for the day at 6am. Luckily our days were so fun and busy that the tired didn't catch up to us too much until we got home, and then we had conference weekend to relax. Bennett is such a sweet spot in this family. Ella kept saying "Bennett is 99% happy, and when you fix why he's sad he just stops crying!" And that perfectly sums up Bennett.

Seeing the Endeavor at the California Science Center. Michael's grandpa worked for Rocketdyne, so that made this exhibit even more fun to see. I loved all the footage of moving the Endeavor through residential streets.

Walt Disney Concert Hall

Walt Disney Concert Hall

Walt Disney Concert Hall

"Instrument Petting Zoo" before the concert.

"A Rose for Lilly"

Beauty and the Beast! I was so, so impressed with this movie. It seriously exceeded my expectations and I loved it SO much.

Ella's friend loves babies, and Bennett was a happy camper.
Bennett experienced swings for the first time on our trip.

This kid was so happy, and sufficiently worn out.

Pixar Exhibit at the California Science Center

Pixar Exhibit at the California Science Center
Pixar Exhibit at the California Science Center

Pixar Exhibit at the California Science Center -- He loves Dory.

Pixar Exhibit at the California Science Center -- Westin loves his pockets so much, but typically needs help getting his second hand inside. Toddlers are such funny creatures.

Rachel came for a couple days in the middle of the week! And the Cannons were dog-sitting Snoopy. Westin loved him, and I am starting to wonder if I am ready to add a dog to the mix over here. My friends in Indiana convinced me that a puppy is harder than a newborn, and every time I remember that conversation I lose my motivation.

We loved meeting up with our friend Christian from our Jerusalem group! He even rocked our summer shirt for the occasion.

L.A. Temple

Beach day! Westin loved the sand way more than he did last summer in Florida. He never ventured out to the water, but we did see dolphins!

Movie night with a cookie instead of bedtime. Can't beat that.


Like I said... this situation is getting tight. Gotta figure out how to skip the pack n play soon. This kid does not know how to sleep with us though, he has literally never slept in our bed.

Ella loves the Great British Baking Show and it inspired her to make delicious macaroons

Tater Hole! Grammy and Papa are so much fun.

Disclaimer: Quinn put the Lakers hat on Bennett. Still a Jazz fan over here.

Walt Disney Concert Hall with Ella and Quinn

Cuties! Clayton and Westin are just one month apart. Still mostly parallel play happening here, but they're going to be besties.

My feeble last-minute attempt at coming up with some sort of Montessori style activity to occupy Westin during General Conference.

Aaaand he was back to us after about 4 minutes.
A text from Michael while we were gone: "Hey, I'm about to buy two raspberry bushes, two blueberry bushes, and a grapevine, unless you tell me no really soon." He cracks me up. Check out that sunflower!

1 comment:

  1. Two thoughts while reading this: 1) so glad Bennett got someones undivided attention for a second. Those big brothers can really be attention hogs. 2) Anders slept on a kids air mattress over Thanksgiving and it was amazing. We're totally getting one. He used the Aerobed for kids but I know there are other cheaper options out there. Just a thought! He can't sleep in our bed either. If we try to make him he literally begs for his own space.


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