Thursday, September 13, 2012

First day of Joy School

Lynzie found some other ladies at church who wanted to do a preschool swap for our kids each week.  I guess we couldn't resist the opportunity to snap a few photos on the first day of school.  We're not biased, but they are awfully cute.

Big Basin Redwoods State Park

We noticed that we had made it through the summer without taking our annual family camping trip.  So, I took a rare day off of work and we headed south through Silicon Valley to the Santa Cruz mountains to Big Basin Redwoods State Park.  Now I've been camping a lot, and have had my run-ins with wildlife, but we were not prepared for the rather aggressive band of raccoons patrolling our campsite.  Within 5 minutes of setting down our crate of food upon arrival, we had at least 6 raccoons swarm/storm the food.  The biggest one made off with our oversized bag of marshmallows.  I went after him, lantern in hand, followed by the other raccoons, who apparently were excited to see what might happen.  Evelyn just stood in the middle of the campsite, eyes wide as saucers, as the whole incident went down.  She was freaked out and wouldn't let either Lynzie or I get more than a foot away from her for the rest of the night.  I'm convinced the raccoon incident will be her first memory of childhood - she's told everyone about the raccoon that stole her marshmallows.

Labor Day Adventures

You would think that we would take it easy on a day off, but we decided that Labor Day would be a perfect day to get up super early to drive north to Duxbury Reef to check out the tide pools.  I woke everyone up at 5 a.m. to drive the hour or so north across the Golden Gate to the southern edge of Point Reyes National Seashore.  We drove through the fog on a rather precarious road through the Marin headlands over to the tiny town of Bolinas, CA where Duxbury Reef is located.  We found sea anemones (referred to as sea enemies by Evelyn), starfish, and even a beached jellyfish.  Once we'd had enough fun on the beach, we drove into town and enjoyed some smoothies mixed up by a true Bolinas hippie (Bolinas has a reputation).  Then we drove over the hill to see Muir Woods, one of the last stands of old growth redwoods.  We finished the half-day trek with submarine sandwiches at the sub center in West Portal.

Monterey County Fair

We discovered there are lots of reasons to go to a county fair with the family.  Here are my top ten...

10 - Abundance of crazy people
9 - Overpriced kid rides
8 - Giant BBQ sausages
7 - Life-size cutouts of major political figures
6 - Exhausted child tantrums
5 - 4H club auction
4 - The Wacky Worm
3 - Mutton busting
2 - Chocolate-covered cheesecake sticks
1 - Dirtbike stunt dudes - a subset of the crazy people

Honestly, the only drawback of the county fair was that I've had to listen to Lynzie talk about how romantic it might be if I were a cowboy.


A House Divided...

Happy Birthday to me

My 31st year is over - and it was a pretty good one.  There is no better way to celebrate than a cake, candles, and my beautiful wife and kids.  Oh yeah, we ate KFC for dinner too.

Garage Sale

My rule of thumb - if you haven't used it in the past 2 years you probably don't need it.  We took everything we didn't sell to Goodwill, and it felt great.  The garage sale signs we posted everywhere included some original Evelyn and Micah artwork. You'll notice on the last one that Evelyn has perfected the letter E.  For her, it is definitely the most important letter (she refers to it as "my letter").


Summer in AZ

You don't often hear people talking about the virtues of Arizona in the summer, but no matter how hot it gets, Arizona is family and so that's where you'll find us when school is out.  We were even lucky enough to get the coolest weather (in temperature) on the 4th of July in something like the past 100 years.  When you live out of town, you have to make the most of your time back at home - and we felt like we did.  

Vacation in Oceanside

The Greer clan descended on Oceanside for a week in June, and we couldn't pass up a subsidized vacation rental on the beach.  Lynzie and I were both in agreement that our week vacation felt like the most relaxing we've had since becoming parents nearly 4 years ago.  We had lots of family, lots of food, lots of beach, and lots of fun - all in one of our favorite places.