Thursday, August 30, 2007

Judy and Blaine's Wedding

On Saturday Steve and I went to an amazing wedding at the Athenaeum in Pasadena.

The columns and steps of the Athenaeum were a beautiful staging area for Judy and Blaine's ceremony on this lovely evening.

Judy and Blaine really paid attention to every detail, including the tables which included a very pretty pale-pink rose centerpiece and about 5 wine glasses per setting!

During the first course of chilled lobster soup we viewed Judy's elegant kimono, which was worn by her mother when she was married 38 years ago.

We also enjoyed Taiko drummers, the powerful sounds booming throughout.

During the main course (Steve and I enjoyed perfectly-cooked filet mignon), lion dancers put on a special show for the guests. With Judy being of Japanese descent, and Blaine having a Chinese background, these two performances had special meaning to their wedding.

Judy, Joyce and I posed for this photo, a mini-reunion from our college days.

Judy and Blaine, thanks so much for inviting us on your special day. Much happiness to the two of you!

Monday, August 27, 2007

The Wizard of Oz

Last Thursday at "Movies in the Park", our city had a showing of "Wizard of Oz" and had photo ops with the characters. Anna and Steve went to this event, and Steve did a great job taking lots of pictures.

I was impressed with the costumes of all the characters, especially the tin man.

The screen was an impressive size for the large crowd.

Anna wanted to dress up for this event, and there was a costume contest. Being so non-competitive, it was a step out of her comfort-zone to stand in front of the audience. She didn't come in first place but is a winner in our book. Anna laughed as she told me about how Daddy was cheering so loudly for her.

The items we bought a couple hours before showtime: some gingham fabric and elastic for the most basic skirt, blue ribbon for her hair, and red shoes from Payless. Although it was not my intention, I see an updated, more modern Dorothy here, hee hee.

Sam wanted to go too but it was too close to his bedtime. Plus he wasn't too thrilled with his costume.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Video Experiment

When I was starting to post a new entry on the blog, I noticed a new
icon in Blogger, a movie icon, so I thought I'd try to upload a video I took a while ago, perhaps around Christmastime. It's of the family enjoying the fountain
at Fashion Island. Sam was enjoying the fountain so much he was garnering lots of stares from his loud screams. So excited by it all, Sam did fall backwards, no injury thank goodness.

I have a few blog-worthy things to catch up on, including a costume contest, and a spectacular wedding.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Two Big Parks, Two Days: Part 2

Today we went to California Adventure for a couple of hours. Here's two close-ups:

Daddy and Sammy on Sam's new favorite ride, the Flix Fun Flyers.

Anna on King Triton's Carousel, complete with underwater animals to ride.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Two Big Parks, Two Days: Part 1

Since the major summer blackout dates have passed for our Disneyland cards, we went to Disneyland one day, and California Adventure the next day. Here's Sam narrating our visit.

Ahoy there me hearties! Daddy, I think I spot some pirate treasure, aargh!

We found the biggest treasure, here on Pirate's Cove! This is unbelievable!

Annie, you gotta help me pick up the treasure chest, sitting on it won't do any good! Wait, why are all these coins stuck together?

We'll try again next time. Annie, I know you're stepping on the ledge to look taller. You're not fooling anyone.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Pat's 40th Birthday Party

On Saturday night, Steve and I went to his friend Pat's surprise birthday party, it was in a hotel ballroom so we got to get dressed up. Sam didn't know at this time that we were leaving him, fortunately were able to depart without any tears.

Pat's wife Julie spared no details with this party, it was organized like a wedding, with menu choices, table decor, a DJ to entertain, and activities. Steve placed in the "balancing" game, birthday boy Pat is to his left.

I wish I took more photos of the ballroom and attendees, Holly did however get this cute shot of us. It was nice getting dressed up and going on a night out on the town. Thanks for babysitting, Yumi and Grandma!

Friday, August 17, 2007

The Great Park Balloon Ride

Today we went to Irvine to the site where the Great Park is being built, I had read that there were free balloon rides.

We arrived a little after the 10 a.m. opening time and waited in the visitor's center for 20 minutes or so before boarding a "flight". Anna is already feeling a little nervous about the ride.

Fortunately her fears went away as we walked onto a solid-fenced and netted-in circular platform, went up about 500 feet into the air, and enjoyed the views.

You can see the small square visitor's center and the surrounding land which used to be an air corps station.

The balloon is tethered so we weren't going anywhere. It was quite a peaceful ride.

Whew, we made it! Free balloon rides at the Great Park are only available until the end of the year, so catch a ride if you can.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Two Beaches, Two Days: Part 2

Today the kids and I met up with Quynh and her kids at her home in Balboa. Down the block we played at the "bay"; still, if it has sand and water it's a beach to Anna and Sam. I wonder if Sam wants to try his hand at kayaking someday.

There are beautiful homes in the area and it's a paradise for kids, with still waters and lots of places to play. Nearby you can catch a ferry ride.

Anna loves to play with new friends and is up for all types of adventures. But there was a time when she stayed near Steve or myself quite a bit, like Sam does now. Don't worry Sam, your time will come soon enough.

It was a very fun morning with our new friends!

Two Beaches, Two Days: Part 1

Yesterday we left a very warm house to escape to Newport Beach, we were greeted by cooler temperatures and an ocean mist, a natural air conditioner. Steve and Anna spent the time making sand sculptures.

Sam is admiring the seahorse, octopus and other sea creatures. I think there's a monkey there too.

Anna took a dip in the ocean, it was icy cold to me but perfect for her.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

A Wedding in "Perris"

Yesterday Angela and David were married in Perris.

I've known Angela for years, from my previous school where we collaborated as classroom teachers. Now she works through the district office but still advises the staff at my new school, which is where she met David.

It was a mad dash on the 91 on Saturday evening, we were a half and hour late, but we still caught the ceremony!

Angela and David's wedding took place at a beautiful home in Perris, it had a huge backyard where both the ceremony and reception took place.

There was a catered taco bar with the best carne asada, huge horchata dispensers, and bouncers for the kids.

Here's a photo of Angela and David and their kids, now one big happy family.

Anna and Sam loved playing on the grassy clearing while the mariachi band played, can you see it in the distance?

While Steve watched the kids, I had time to visit with some friends from my school, and friends from the district. Thanks so much Steve!

It was a very, very fun wedding, for the kids and adults! Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Happy Birthday Marilyn!

Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday dear Marilyn,
Happy birthday to you!

Pictured here are Marilyn's gifts we sent out in the mail, also Ted's birthday gift (one of two folding chairs complete with cup holder) which we'll give to you when we see you in person next time! Have a great day!

Monday, August 06, 2007

Wading Pool

A simple wading pool can provide lots of entertainment, so long as the kids don't mind close quarters. Here, at Dion and Lucy's house, the kids enjoyed "swimming" last week.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Harvest Festival 2007

Today we went to the Harvest Crusade at Anaheim Stadium. The stadium itself is pretty impressive, look at the huge bats decorating the front.

The kids enjoyed sitting in their own bleacher seats while listening to great praise tunes. For more information on the Harvest Crusades click here.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Bug Catcher

Believe it or not, one of Anna's new hobbies is catching bugs. After Steve bought her this $1.99 bug holder at Target, Anna's goal is to find all types of bugs, dead or alive. This day we found a june bug, a bumblebee, a moth and a fly.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Bryce's Birthday

Last weekend we were invited to Bryce's 3rd birthday party. Here's a photo of most of the attendees, there was lots of great food and fun activities.

Fortutately Sam was on very good behavior, as the kids in attendance were all so sweet and accomodating to him. He loved this playfort, complete with steering wheel, telescope and wavy slide.

Thanks for having us over!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Which one doesn't belong?

There are many parallels among our family members, to name a few:

Sam and Mina like organization.
Anna and Steve love storytelling.
Sam and Steve are mellow.
Anna and Mina like a good cry.
Steve and Mina enjoy naps.
Anna and Mina desire world travel.
Sam and Steve would rather be at home.
And... Anna and Steve are the hams.